7 Ways to Make Cardio More Fun

7 Ways to Make Cardio More FunYou know it’s good for your body and health and you understand the effects it has on muscular definition.  After all, cardio exercise is a great way to shred fat so that every muscle lining shows easier.  You hit the gym regularly and have a goal to perform 30 minutes of cardio exercise every day, which is the recommended amount of time for cardio exercise every day.  The first three weeks started amazingly, you have been on a routine and have even enjoyed the way cardio exercise feels following a challenging workout.  Now that the initial “high” is over however, you find that cardio exercise is becoming more and more challenging because your mind is unable to stay focused, meaning there is a level of boredom present.  Let’s take a closer look at cardio exercise and how it relates to health and wellness.

Traditional cardio exercise has been a regular commodity at gyms for decades.  Regular cardio exercise, which is short for cardiorespiratory exercise, builds cardiorespiratory endurance since the two primary body systems worked are the cardiovascular and respiratory systems.  These two body systems need to work together synergistically in order to take in, filter, and circulate oxygenated blood to the working muscle cells in the body.  In short, this is a way to feed muscles much needed oxygen in times of need during exercise.  Those who regularly perform cardio exercises are some of the fittest individuals around.  Fitness is a measurement of how efficient the cardiovascular and respiratory systems work together and is often indicated by the VO2max measurement.  While many are regulars in performing cardio exercise, there is a level of plateauing expected and the following sections discuss how to keep cardio more fun in order to prevent a plateau.

7 Ways to Make Cardio More Fun

Update the Playlist

Music is everywhere in the gym.  Individuals walk around with earbuds in the ears and IPods, cellphones, and MP3 players are common.  As a result of a music boom in the gym, performance and training are generally positively affected.  Recent studies have indicated that exercise performance is more efficient when an individual works out to a synchronous music playlist compared to slower tempo music [1].  Prior to your next run, cycle, or cardio workout, tweak your music playlist with songs containing a tempo of at least 135 beats per minute.  For more intensity, aim for a tempo of about 150 beats per minute.

Search for Cardio Apps

In light of cellphones being common, software developers have created applications geared towards workouts and exercise.  One area to look for to make your next cardio workout is more fun is to download some free apps and give them a try.  There are a wide range of apps currently available on the Android and IOS markets, highlighted by zombie runs, ghost races, and friend challenges.  Try a free application on your next run or cycle to mix up your cardio routine and make it more fun.


Humans love friendly competition, especially when it comes to exercise.  One simple way to make cardio exercise more fun is to make it a race [2].  Start by mapping out a particular course (if running or cycling outdoors) and get out the timer.  Each time you set out to perform cardio exercise, try to beat the time little-by-little each time or attempt to beat your pace with each workout.  This method is beneficial for increasing motivation and can help prevent a plateau.

Watch TV

As a result of today’s excellent technology and ease of media, television and movie viewing has become easier than from a decade prior.  If you enjoy running on a treadmill or cycling on an indoor cycle, bring your smartphone, IPad, or electronic device and stream your favorite TV show, movie, or video to make cardio exercise more fun.

Grab a partner

Running or cycling outdoors (or even in a gym) is more fun with a partner.  Performing cardio exercise with a partner should involve discussions to stimulate the mind and keep a level of entertainment.  As a result of stimulating the mind, your brain will stay focused on the conversation rather than the cardio exercise and will make the time appear to go by quickly.  Next time it is cardio day, bring a friend with you and strike up stimulating conversation.

New Gear

Some individuals need entertainment to help motivate a workout while others are motivated through new exercise gear.  Treat yourself to a quarterly shopping trip or a monthly visit online and shop for new cardio exercise shirts, shorts, or shoes.  This will help you feel better about yourself and it will help you feel like you’re working towards a goal rather than struggling through a routine.


Similar to shopping for motivation, develop a system of rewards to help keep the motivation levels high so that cardio exercise stays fun and enjoyable.  Some rewards could include shopping, a post-workout massage, or a healthy treat.  Stray away from rewards that are geared at bad foods because this could develop a junk-food habit over time.


[1] http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22828457

[2] https://www.shape.com/fitness/workouts/5-playful-ways-escape-your-workout-routines


About the Author

, Celebrity Personal Trainer and Fitness & Nutrition Expert headquartered in Scottsdale, AZ. He specializes in helping men and women achieve weight loss, muscle building, toning and other customized fitness & nutrition programs to create a Healthy Lifestyle. James offers private luxury personal training, 12-week custom workout plans, and personalized nutrition meal plans. Follow on Google+.

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